Florida Panthers star Matthew Tkachuk made a surprise appearance on the NBA on TNT pregame show on Saturday. Tkachuk, who recently led the Panthers to the Stanley Cup Finals, was invited to share his thoughts on the game and his own journey in hockey.
Matthew Tkachuk discusses Jayson Tatum connection, the best hockey skill, and his lackluster game-two celebration
During the interview, Tkachuk discussed Charles Barkley calling him the best hockey player in his family. The remark seemed to bother Matthew's father, Keith Tkachuk, who also had a successful NHL career. Matthew expressed his gratitude for his father's impact on his career and acknowledged the importance of his guidance and support.
When asked about the biggest skill in hockey, Tkachuk emphasized the significance of hockey sense. He explained that knowing where to go on the ice and when to be there is important. As shown by his outstanding performances throughout the playoffs, Tkachuk's intelligence has been crucial to his success.
Matthew Tkachuk revealed that he was rooting for the series between the Vegas Golden Knights and the Dallas Stars to go the distance. He believes that a longer series will allow the Panthers to take advantage of the rest and recovery time, providing them with an edge in the Stanley Cup Finals.
Reflecting on his own accomplishments, Matthew Tkachuk admitted that he didn't fully celebrate his overtime winner in Game 2 of the Western Conference Finals against the Hurricanes. Instead, he quickly left the ice, focusing on the next game and the task at hand.
The TNT crew also played a clip of Matthew Tkachuk and Boston Celtics forward Jayson Tatum in middle school gym class at Chaminade College Preparatory School. Despite their past connection, Tkachuk admitted that he was rooting for the Miami Heat in the series. However, he expressed his desire to see both Jimmy Butler and Jayson Tatum "go off" and put on impressive performances.
Tkachuk's appearance on the 'NBA on TNT' pregame show provided basketball fans with a glimpse into the world of hockey and the mindset of a rising star. His humility, dedication, and knowledge of the game were evident throughout the interview. He left viewers with a deeper appreciation for his skills and the sport of hockey.